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CAB USERS ARE being warned by detectives not to put their personal safety at risk when booking a taxi or private hire vehicle online.

There has been a surge in ‘fake’ cab companies advertising their services on social media and a police spokeswoman said: “Police are warning people about the dangers of getting into unlicensed taxis after an increase in the number of people offering their services on sites, like Facebook.

“Passengers using these online fake taxis can never be guaranteed how safe they are going to be. By getting into one of these vehicles you could be potentially putting your life at risk.

“A really important part of a night out is making sure that you can get home afterwards. And the best way to ensure that your safety is to pre-arrange a lift with a friend or family member or to only use a licensed taxi or private hire vehicle.”

Inspector Nicola Wearing added:

Police work closely with licensing authorities and licensed cab companies to ensure that there are lots of ways for people to get home after a night out.

“What we don’t want is people getting into unlicensed taxis and by that, I mean people who do taxi runs in their own cars, who are unlicensed and could be anyone. Don’t just get into cars that look like taxis or accept lifts from strangers in any circumstances.”

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